RADNOR, PA – Upon entering Thursday’s match-up, Springside Chestnut Hill Academy and Agnes Irwin’s girls’ soccer programs had a similar goal – to win. While that is normally the main ambition entering any game, both teams desperately needed the victory in order to still have a chance at winning the Inter-Ac girls’ soccer title at the end of the season.
Fortunately, the Blue Devils were lucky enough to come away with the 3-1 victory, improving to 7-2-1 (3-2-1 Inter-Ac) on the season.
“This win was all about making sure we stay in the running to try and compete in the Inter-Ac,” said Springside Chestnut Hill senior, Grace Rorke. “We’ve had a few tough losses throughout the season, and a few tough ties. So, this game was really important to make sure that we can stay with the top other group of teams in the league. It was a good accomplishment for the day.”
“Luck,” however, may not have been the proper word choice in describing the Blue Devil’s victory. It was obvious that Springside has been concentrating on their footwork, as their dexterous ball-handling was apparent to those in attendance.
“In practice, a lot of times we do drills that seem so simple…But I think by just being so consistent by doing those drills really helps us to have such good footwork,” said Springside Chestnut Hill senior and University of Maryland commit, Emily McNesby. “So some people can see during the game that we tend to be good at that.”
Goal Scorers: Madison Niebish scored the opening goal of the game in the first half to give the Blue Devils a 1-0 edge heading into halftime. McNesby scored the second goal for SCH by heading the ball off the post with 27 minutes remaining in the contest.
With five minutes to go, AIS freshman Liza Richardson found the back of the net for the Irwins off a deflected pass from Maria Pansini to put her team on the board 2-1. Two minutes later, Rorke headed in a goal off a corner kick to seal the game for the Blue Devils with a final score of 3-1.
The Irwins 4-5-3 (1-4 Inter-Ac) are set to face Episcopal Academy, who currently garner an unblemished 5-0 league record, on Wednesday at home at 4:00 p.m. In order to come away with the victory, Richardson noted a few team improvements to make going forward.
“I would really like to work with my team to get more up the field, because we tend to stay back a lot,” said Richardson. “Once we get to play better teams we are going to have to be on the ball more and defend a lot better and work together.”
Looking ahead, the Blue Devils will host Princeton Day School tomorrow afternoon before traveling to play Penn Charter in another league match-up on Friday at 4:00p.m.